January 19, 2022

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Scientists didn't want to test the theory that the virus leaked out of the lab

Scientists didn’t want to test the theory that the virus leaked out of the lab

Jeremy Farrar, a British infectious disease scientist and director of the Wellcome Trust, wrote in an email on February 2, 2020, that: A ‘possible explanation’ for the origin of the coronavirus is that it rapidly evolved from a SARS-like virus inside human tissue in a low-security laboratory. He went on to write that such a development could “accidentally produce a virus poised to spread rapidly among humans.” This email was sent to Dr. Anthony Fauci, chief medical advisor to the President of the United States, and Dr. Francis Collins, director of the US National Institutes of Health (NIH).

“Do you believe in this chain of coincidences?”

Farrar wrote in the email that other scientists also believe that the virus cannot evolve naturally. One of them was the professor. Mike Farzan of Scripps Research, an expert who has discovered how the primary SARS virus binds to human cells. Scientists were particularly concerned about a part of the coronavirus called the furin cleavage site, which is part of the spike protein that helps the virus enter cells and make it infectious to humans.

“(Farzan) is concerned about the location of the furin (fission) and has difficulty interpreting it as having occurred outside the laboratory, although there are possible pathways in nature, but it is very unlikely. A chain of coincidences What do you know about laboratory in WuhanHow much can there be in nature – an accidental release or a natural event? I rated it at 70:30 or 60:40,” Farrar wrote summarizing Farzan’s concerns in an email.

What is the origin of the virus?

Subsequent news showed that by February 4, Farrar had revised the laboratory’s leak probability rating to 50:50, while the professor had done so. Eddie Holmes of the University of Sydney estimated the possibility of accidental release of the virus at 60%.

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The emails show that other scientists were also not convinced that SARS-CoV-2 arose naturally. “I can’t imagine what this would be like in nature,” said Bob Garry of the University of Texas. a. Andrew Rambaut of the University of Edinburgh wrote that the instantaneous fission site “struck me as unusual”. “I think the only people who have enough information or access to samples to do that are the Wuhan teams,” he added.

Close discussion

The emails were sent in response to a conference call between 12 scientists, including the UK government’s chief scientific adviser, Patrick Vallance, on February 1, 2020. As the Daily Telegraph wrote, they showed that by February 2, the scientists were trying to stop the work. The controversy over the laboratory leakage theory.

Dr. Ron Faucher wrote to Farrar: “Further discussion of such accusations will needlessly distract the best scientists from their daily responsibilities and do unnecessary damage to science in general, and the science of China in particular.”

Dr. Collins, then director of the National Institutes of Health, responded to Farrar, “I share your view that experts need to be called in quickly in the form of confidence-building or conspiracy theories will quickly become dominant, potentially to the detriment of the science and international consensus.”

As the Daily Telegraph points out, organizations that have the emails have repeatedly refused to publish their content. The University of Edinburgh recently rejected an application for access to Professor M. Rambaut, arguing that “disclosure of (them) could jeopardize the physical or mental health and safety of individuals”.

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